Welcome back to the start of the summer term and I hope everyone had a great Easter break. It is hard to believe that we are already two thirds of the way through the school year. Our students were delighted to be back and grateful to once again be out of bed before midday! In fact one of our students, Drew Boulton in Year 9, was so happy to be back he could only express it through a backflip!
I’d like to start the blog by wishing Year 11 and Post-16 students, who begin their GCSE and A Level examinations in the next few weeks, the very best of luck. It was great to see so many students choosing to come into school over the holiday for revision – keep up the good work everyone.
First up, we start with the winners of the Science Week poster competition. The Science department would like to thank every student that entered the competition. It was very hard to choose only three winners as there were over 60 entries and the quality and effort that the students put in was fantastic. First place went to a group entry and was awarded to Evie Wheeler, Courtney Hunwicks, Beth Riley and Rosie Hayers (Year 8). It was chosen because of the range of topics they researched and discussed regarding the ‘Changing Earth’ from climate to political issues. The joint second prize went to Dedan Benjamin (Year 7) and Denzil Brown (Year 8). Dedan’s poster covered many chemical changes with a brilliant ‘Spiderman’ theme. Denzil’s poster was chosen as it was a simple but very eye catching design. The best 10 posters have been entered into the British Science Association’s annual poster competition and we wish them luck. The other poster finalist entries were:
- Eleanor Moyse
- Kim Shipp
- Megan Curtis
- Alicja Gugula
- Jarrad Edwards-Rumble
- Lucy Rickwood
- Immy Taylor
- Carmen O’Neil
Well done to everyone who took part. Apologies for the the ‘quality of lighting’ in the photos below. Taking pictures against a bright yellow background might not have been the best idea! (Mentioning no names Ms Parsons!!).
A few weekends ago, Mrs Rickard (our Careers Advisor) and a number of Plymstock School students attended the UDO British Street Dance Championships and the Southwest Street Dance Challenge Championships from three different dance schools. As a consequence we now have quite a few British champions in the school.
- Tiffanie Rickard: Over-18 Intermediate Team (1st place). She is a bit of a star and currently holds three British titles and a World title!
- Danielle Wonnacott, Freya Blount and Jess Frampton: Over-18 Novice Team (1st place).
- Daisie Pulley: Over-18 advanced team (2nd place) as well as being the 2016 and 2017 Under-16 British Female Break dancing Champion!
Also participating in the British Championships were Freya Blount, Jess Frampton and Imogen Williams.
Southwest Street Dance Challenge
- Daisie Pulley took 1st place in all of her events.
- Joe Pearcey took 1st place in the Under-12.
- Olivia Hughes achieved third place in the Under-14 Duo.
The group attend different Dance Schools (Rhythm City Dance School, Big Dance Company and The Groovement Project). It’s quite rare to have so many students at one secondary school achieve so much success. Well done everyone.
Just before the Easter break, some of our Year 13 students took to the waves for their Public Services Surfing Assessment as part of their water-based outdoor and adventurous activity. Despite it being freezing, you can see the group had a great time. Mrs Dover, who led the trip, insisted that I included a photo of her ‘standing up’ on a board. It’s just a shame that moments later she fell off!
Earlier this week I paid a visit to our Design and Technology department. Our Year 11 Product Design students have just completed their GCSE projects which are now being showcased in the display cabinets in the corridor. All I can say is, the quality of work is exceptional and the students should be really proud of their achievements. Well done everyone.
Ten Tors 2017 is not far away now and a number of our students are in training for the big event. Both the 35 and 45 mile teams took part in a gruelling ‘mock’ training hike over the Easter break that involved our intrepid hikers completing a whole Ten Tors route in cold but sunny conditions. Both teams did fantastically well especially the 45 mile team (Andrew Hudson, Lucy Evans, Amy Jordan) who steamed round the ten designated tors and finished by 1:15pm on the Sunday, and despite the dry conditions, this was an awesome effort by anyone’s standards!
The 35 mile team (Jacob Goode, Alex Dodimead, Jacob Barry, Charlie Bartlett and Lucy Carder) walked really well throughout the two days and even managed a few extra miles when they were tracking down Chat Tor on the Saturday! Following an overnight camp they finished at 4:15pm on Sunday.
The teams have worked together tirelessly over 13 training hikes, including numerous overnight camps and through all types of weather, including snow. Just to give you an idea of the commitment, dedication and tenacity shown by all the students on a typical overnight camp – They meet in Plymstock at 6:00am be walking by 7:30am, after travelling out to the moors and carrying out a full Kit check. The teams will then walk all day Saturday before camping around 7-8:00pm that evening. The teams will then be up at 4:30am to cook breakfast, then strike camp and walk to the finish point at about 3-4:00pm on the Sunday.
The culmination of all this training will be the taking part in the Ten Tors event on the weekend of May 6-7th when our teams will attempt the 35 and 45 mile challenge, walking unaided with all their equipment over Dartmoor’s toughest terrain. The very best of luck to everyone.
I’d like to say well done to our Year 10/11 Netball team. The team competed in an end of season tournament before the Easter break. They beat Stoke Damerel Community College, Plymouth High School for Girls, Lipson Cooperative Academy and Hele’s School on the way to the final, where they came a close second to Devonport High School for Girls. I heard that Jess Stewart was like a ‘terrier’ on the court! A great effort girls.
There are four winners for our Post-16 students of the week. You will recall that several months ago, I highlighted an engineering project that a small group of Post-16 Physics students were involved in with the University of Plymouth. Just before the Easter break their project culminated with a presentation day at the university. The students did a fantastic job and were a real credit to the school. The students were
- Nathan Levitt
- Adam Rigler
- Rhys Heslop
- Josh Davolls
I would also like to thank Mr Wilson who supported the students and enabled this opportunity to take place.
Our Year 11 student of the week is Issac Hutchins. He has been nominated for being an all-round great student and his recent performance in the Drama GCSE examination moderation was excellent. Well done Issac.
Congratulations go to one of our diving stars – Aidan Heslop, who is our Year 10 student of the week. Aidan competed in The British National Junior Elite Diving Championships during the Easter break. He did really well and came away with two Gold medals for 1m and 3m springboards – making him the under-16 British Champion two years in a row.
In addition, the Platform was a very tight final and Aidan took the silver with less than a single point behind the gold! Aidan scored 425.25 with the Champion scoring 426.10.
The great result overall means Aidan has again qualified for the Junior European Championships, last year it was Croatia and this year it is in Bergen, Norway. He has also been selected to attend a Grand Prix meet in Madrid, as well as British National Championships in Edinburgh. The end goal being the Commonwealth Games next April.
Well done Aidan – amazing.
The winner for Year 9 this week is Thomas Reilly. Approximately six months ago, Thomas took up boxing with a local club. He has trained hard and showed some real natural talent. Over the Easter break he entered into a tournament in Torquay, where clubs from across the region competed. I am delighted to report that Thomas won his competition and was awarded a gold trophy. Well done Thomas – an incredible achievement in such a short time and a real testament to your hard work.
Our Year 8 winner is Shanine Abbott. She always tries her very best in every lesson, gaining ten ‘outstanding’ gradings for commitment in her last progress check. Shanine is a lovely young lady, always polite and with a big smile.
Our last student of the week is Joseph Pearcey. Apart from being a great student he is also a talented street dancer. He recently competed in the British Intermediate UDO Street Dance Championships with his crew called ‘Identity’ and placed third nationally. He also achieved 1st place in a recent South West competition too. Well done Joseph. Unfortunately Joseph was absent when I took this week’s photos!
As I write this blog I have just received some great news – Mrs Slade (our Head of Religious Studies) is the proud grandmother of a lovely granddaughter called Daisy, weighing in at 7lb 9oz. Mrs Slade is hoping that everyone is shocked that she is a grandmother as she feels she looks far too young!
Finally – a message from Gail Buckler (Headteacher’s PA and HR Administrator)…
Please, please help me support the fantastic work of the local children’s charity, Jeremiah’s Journey.
****I am throwing myself out of a perfectly serviceable plane on 11th June****
Jeremiah’s Journey is the charity chosen by the staff of Plymstock School for this year and we hope to raise awareness of this worthwhile cause (check out their homepage HERE). One member of staff thought it would be a good idea to raise money by doing a sky dive! It seemed a good idea at the time, apparently…..
Gail needs to raise at least £450 to enable the sky dive to go ahead however, with your help, she would like to raise £1,000. If you feel you would like to sponsor this event you will be able to do so via the local giving page HERE